In the latest sign that cryptocurrency is becoming an increasingly prominent part of day-to-day life, the Spanish tax body, Agencia Tributaria (AEAT), has serviced over 60,000 notices to crypto owners, a massive 348% increase year-on-year.
According to Europa Press, Spain has been stepping up its efforts in retrieving uncollected tax from two key areas: cryptocurrency operations and foreign property rentals
The country has history in pursuing unpaying crypto holders with active operations kicking off in 2018 and has specifically focused on big financial frauds involving blockchain tech.
In 2019, Europol reported that Spain led an operation against a large-scale, cryptocurrency-based, money-laundering organisation and was successful in dismantling it. However, this latest move by the AEAT has an instructive nature and doesn’t seek to punish individuals who are overdue with their taxes. It is a reminder that crypto traders and owners are subject to the same tax laws as the rest of the population, and the latest sign that government policy is leading towards acceptance of cryptocurrency as a payment method across a number of sectors.
Spain’s Approach to Taxing Cryptocurrency
Spain has ramped up its efforts to pursue crypto holders in the sense of collecting due tax. On January 10, 2020, the European Union voted in a new directive to guarantee more transparency in the sector by asking banks to remit information about crypto holders to authorities where appropriate.
Specifically, the watchdog is looking for discrepancies in transacted cryptocurrencies and the amount paid to the state’s coffers.
AEAT has reiterated its readiness to pursue tougher measures against potential wrong doers. The hope remains that the latest operation will prompt conscientious crypto owners into paying voluntarily, while giving decentralised tech more clarity from a regulatory standpoint in the country.
Back in 2018, Bank of Spain and the Spanish Securities and Exchange Commission (CNMV) reminded investors to avoid cryptocurrency investment due to the ill-defined regulatory framework and potential tax complications.
Although still not seen as a legal tender which can be used at the likes of crypto casinos, it would seem the Spanish authorities are increasingly open to its usage in certain forms.
More moves such as this by governmental organisations around the world would likely only lead to further cryptocurrency and blockchain adoption as grey areas become increasingly white, allowing early adopters and potential crypto holders a better understanding of the market and its legal implications.